This is the sixth chapter of Life After Death/Original.
"Hey, uh, it's Pete, right?" Jennifer asked Pete, who was siting lifelessly on a couch in the apartment. He stared at the ground, and didn't respond. "Okay...well, I was wondering if you wanted to help me with a job?"
Pete continued staring at the ground in silence. He refused to respond to, or acknowledge Jennifer.
"Look. If you want to stay here, -- become part of our group -- you are gonna have to help out around here. I know your sister died, but Jack said your whole group get's thrown out if you don't cooperate. Do you really want to do that to them?"
Pete shifted his gaze straight into Jennifer's eyes.
"Maybe," he replied, coldly. Jennifer stared back, in disbelief. Pete took a deep breath, and spoke.
"What do you want...?"
"We have a problem at the north end of the building. Some zombies broke the glass on the door about a week back, and we haven't had time to fix it. Right now we just have a piece of wood blocking it, but I'm not sure it will hold if more come. I want you to help me park a car in front of it. Think you can do that?"
"I'm not a child. Of course I can do that."
"Let's just get this over with, then."
Jennifer looked back at Susie, who was sitting on a chair in the same room, and they exchanged confused looks. Pete slowly rose from the couch, and walked to the door. Jennifer followed, still with a confused look on her face.
The two walked to the back end of the building, opposite the entrance that Devon, Bill, and Pete were at. They pulled open a large, metal door, and immediately saw the entrance. The glass was entirely missing from the door, and there were a lot of little bits around the ground. There was a large piece of wood nailed to the wall, and covered quite a bit of the door, but there were still holes.
"It's not just zombies we're worried about," Jennifer told Pete. "It's also the draft. We don't have much wood to cover this up all the way -- not that it would even hold that well if zombies tried to get in -- and the little we have we will need for fire when winter comes. It's already like, what...September?"
Jennifer pulled the door open, and walked out to the back parking lot. They had several vehicles there; three sports cars, a truck, a van, and an SUV, along with the SUV that Jack, Zain, Devon, and Bill had taken. Jennifer pulled a set of keys out of her pocket, and clicked a button on the remote car lock. The truck unlocked, and Jennifer walked over, and opened the door.
"Alright," Jennifer said, breaking the silence. "I'm gonna drive this puppy over to the door. You tell me when to stop, 'kay?" Pete slightly nodded, and Jennifer closed the door. She started up the truck, and backed up.
Pete walked over to the door, and stopped, awaiting Jennifer. She drove up to the door, and made a sharp turn to the left, so she was parallel to the wall. She backed up slowly until she felt the scrape of the wall on the truck. She then turned to the right so that the front end of the truck was touching the wall, too, save for the mirror, but the small distance from the edge of the mirror to the truck was not enough to let a zombie at the door.
"Okay, tell me when to stop!" Jennifer yelled at Pete through the open window. She looked at her mirror, and saw Pete signalling her to keep going. He backed up slightly, and then stopped, still signalling her. She continued backing up until she could tell she was mere inches away from Pete. He was still signalling her to back up.
Jennifer opened the door of the truck and leaped out. She stormed to the back of the truck and saw Pete, like she had though, inches away from the truck.
"What the hell, Pete?!" she screamed at him. "What, did you want me to run you over?"
"Yes," Pete quietly admitted. Jennifer was shocked at his answer, but refused to respond. She looked back at the truck, and she saw that it covered the door perfectly.
"Well...we still did good. Come on, let's go back inside."
Jack walked back into the liquor store, and tossed a blanket and pillow each to the other three men.
"It's gonna be real cold tonight," Jack told them. "There's a chill in the air."
"Winter's around the corner," Zain said. "We really need to get as much as we can before the first snowfall. We can't risk going out and getting stuck in the snow."
"I've already planned a big supply run to the strip mall a few blocks away from here. Last time I drove by there, it looked completely untouched."
"Me and Bill can help," Devon offered. "We-"
"Hey, hold on now," Bill interrupted. "I didn't agree to that."
"I already planned on having you two," Jack explained. "That is, if y'all are willing to go."
"I never said I wasn't, I'm just not so keen on this jackass signing me up for crap without asking me."
"Alright, we got ourselves a plan. Now, let's hit the hay. Like I said, gotta be up bright and early tomorrow."
The four men started to get comfortable and ready to sleep, when Devon heard a noise in the distance.
"Guys..." he said. "I think I heard something."
"You're just drunk, Dev," Bill said. "Now shut up and let me sleep."
"No, I seriously heard something. I'm gonna go check."
"It's nothing, I'm telling you."
Devon walked out the front door and looked around. He couldn't see anything. He was considering going back inside until he heard a noise coming from behind the store. He slowly crept to the edge of the building and poked his head around the corner, where he saw at least two or three dozen zombies roaming around, slowly shifting towards the front of the store. He immediately jumped back, clinging to the wall. His heart was racing as he ran back into the store.
"Guys!" he whispered as loud as he could. "We need to go, now!"
"Ugh...why?" Jack asked.
"That's bullshit," Bill said. "You're just butthurt that you're hearing things."
"Go look for yourself, Bill. Theres about fifty of them at the backside of the store."
"Wait, wait, wait," Jack said, waving his hand around. "There's a back door in here, somewhere. Let's look through there, to be safe." Jack got up and grabbed his flashlight.
"No! No flashlights. They will see it and start swarming the store."
"Oh, shit, yeah." Jack walked around, holding his hands out to prevent walking into shelves. After a few moments of searching, he finally saw the back door. He looked out, and saw the zombies.
"Holy fuck..." Bill and Zain ran over, and looked out too.
"Jesus," Bill exclaimed. "Dev, you were right. How the hell are we gonna get out of here?"
"Simple," Zain started. "Look around us. What do you see?"
"Beer?" Jack semi-sarcastically responded.
"Not just beer, bottles. What happens when you toss a bottle at cement?"
"It shatters..." Devon said, starting to piece together. "And makes a lot of noise."
"Exactly. All we need to do is open that door and chuck a few bottles at the pavement to attract the zombies and keep them away from the front long enough for us to leave."
"That's...smart," Bill said, impressed.
"I know. Now, someone grab me a few big bottles. As big and noisy as you can find."
Jack went and searched the shelves with his flashlight and found two 2 litre bottles of beer. He brought them back to Zain.
"It's gonna be sad seeing these suckers go," Jack jokingly said. Zain slowly opened the door, and slid his arm around the door. He pulled back, and flung the bottle as hard as he could. It smashed to the ground, and he quickly did the same with the second and shut the door before they could notice him. Soon, the zombies all started to swarm around the back door.
"Alright, I saw we have about a minute to get out before they bust that door down," Zain told them all. "Let's move!"
The four men ran to where they were sleeping and grabbed their blankets and pillows. Zain, Bill, and Devon ran out the door to the SUV, while Jack stayed back and ran to grab a few bottles of beer. He stuffed them in his jacket, and ran out the door, but was attacked by a lone zombie.
"Ahhh!" Jack screamed. "Fuck!" Jack dropped everything, including two of the bottles of beer, which smashed to the ground. He pushed the zombie away, and sucker punched it in the face, knocking it to the ground. He pulled out his pistol, and shot it. He picked up his pillow and blanket, and ran to the SUV, still holding on to the lone bottle of beer he had.
"What the fuck, man?" Zain said. "You just attracted the whole hoard! And for what; beer?!"
"Shut the fuck up, Zain," Jack replied. "Just toss this in the back, and let's go." Jack handed him his stuff, and went inside the SUV. Zain shook his head, and put Jack's stuff in the back, and closed the trunk.
"Is everything alright?" Devon asked.
"It's fine," Jack assured him. Zain got in the front passenger seat, and Jack slammed his foot on the gas pedal.
Later that night at the apartment, Jennifer was in the living room, counting the group's ammo supply. Heather was cooking hamburgers for dinner, while Charlie, Oliver, Jonathon, David, Nick, and Madison played a game of Go-Fish. Susie had just woken up from a nap, and got up from a matress that was laying on the ground. She looked around, and was shocked that Jack's group hadn't got back yet.
"Where are they?" Susie asked Jennifer.
"I don't know," she replied. "Everyone has been wondering the same. Heather and David are pretty worried about them, but I'm sure they will be back soon."
"I hope so..."
"They might have even decided to spend the night."
About ten minutes later, Jennifer heard the sound of a car in the distance.
"Looks like they didn't. That's them!" she announced. "Come on guys, lets help." Susie, Oliver, Jonathon, and David got up and followed Jennifer outside. The SUV turned around the corner and stopped in front of the apartment. The men got out, and went around to the trunk. They pulled out the supplies they scavenged and gave it to the people that came out and helped.
After everything was inside, Jack went back out to drive the SUV to the back parking lot, when Oliver, David, and Jonathon came out.
"Hey, dad," David said.
"Yeah?" he replied.
"I wanted to ask you something...do you think you could, uh...take us out for gun practice tomorrow?"
"David, I already-"
"Please, Mr. Kappick," Jonathon begged. "You said we need to be prepared for the worst. We need to know how to shoot to defend ourselves."
"Yeah, and now that those people are here, they can help us, too," Oliver stated.
"Please, dad," David pressured his father.
"Ugh, alright," Jack said, giving in. "Tomorrow afternoon. I will take you three, Devon, Bill, hell, Susie and Jen could use some training. Their shots are a l'il rusty."
The three went back inside, as Jack watched. He couldn't help but smile. He didn't like his son being so friendly and nice all the time, but he was still happy to see him getting along with people, even after everything that already happened.
Jack got inside the SUV and pulled it around back, and got out. He saw the truck in front of the back entrance, and smiled.
"Well, I'll be damned," he said to himself. "I bet Pete did this. He better have..." Jack went around to the front and back inside.
Once he got inside the apartment, he walked over to Heather, and hugged her.
"I'm so glad you are safe," she said.
"Me too," he replied. They hugged for a few seconds, before breaking apart. Jack then walked over to Jennifer.
"Pete help you with that truck?" he asked her.
"Yeah..." she said. "But, he...he wanted me to run him over." Jack stared at her in surprise.
"Yeah, but I get it. His sister dying and all. Still, it's sad." Jack nodded, and went to the center of the room. He cleared his throat, and started speaking.
"Alright. By now I'm sure y'all have noticed three new people around here. Well, their names are Devon, Bill, and Pete," Jack pointed to each of them. "And they are going to be joining us. Devon and Bill are fast on their feet, and make a great team, hell, Devon even saved my life from a zombie. And Pete has been a big help around here. He helped Jennifer block off the back door, so it will be safer and warmer in here.
"Now, tomorrow, I'm gonna be heading out into the country with some people. David, Oliver, and Jon approached me about some gun training, and I agree with them. We need to work as a group here; we need to be strong and we need to be able to protect ourselves. And for that, we need people who can shoot. I'm taking those three out, and I was hoping that Susie, Jen, Devon, and Bill would like to come with. We will be out there for a few hours, and we will waste quite a few bullets, but it will be worth it. We got some ammo from our run, so it hopefully won't make a huge dent in our supply. If anyone else wants to come with, be sure to tell me before tomorrow afternoon."
Jack looked around the room for a bit, before nodding and walking off. He approached Heather, who had a worried look on her face.
"You...just came back though. Twice!" she said in disappointment.
"I know, but I need to do this," he told her. "For us. For the group. We need people to protect us, people who can shoot. We can't exactly do that in the middle of the city. It will attract too many zombies."
"I guess. But you've been gone so much lately. I barely see you anymore..."
"That's going to change, honey. I promise."
The two embraced once more, as a tear trickled down Heather's face.
- Devon Brandt
- Bill Rooney
- Pete Rhode
- Nick Shiman
- Zain Ralph
- Susie Shiman
- Jack Kappick
- David Kappick
- Jennifer Cune
- Heather Kappick
- Charlie Kappick
|Life After Death Chapters|
|Act One||Chapter 1 • Chapter 2 • Chapter 3 • Chapter 4 • Chapter 5 • Chapter 6 • Chapter 7|